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Dream the Impossible (Yet Practical) Dream

Without question the world needs to transition to energy systems disproportionately supplied by clean energy technologies. The current energy matrix, especially here in the United States, is not only costly in terms of negative externalities (eg: storm damage, environmental clean up, etc.) but it is also unsustainable. At some point all of that oil, coal, and gas will run out.

We're going to need a bigger plot of land. (Photo: Abengoa Solar, from Wikimedia Commons.)

And, this will be devilishly difficult to achieve, especially with practical and sound research like this recent report, Geophysical constraints on the reliability of solar and wind power in the United States. And as this MIT Technology Review piece summarizes, there are plenty of barriers that must be addressed pragmatically if we are going to progress.

However, that does not mean we should in any way stop pushing the envelope. Making the necessary infrastructure investments in our national electricity infrastructure can lead to incredible economic growth while bringing the benefits of a cleaner environment and healthier citizens. Its benefits far outweigh its detriments, and is more economically optimal than the sub-par decisions of late in the U.S.


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